(PDF) Zijie Li and Peter van Beek. Finding small backdoors in SAT instances. Proceedings of the 24th Canadian Conference on Artificial Intelligence, St John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, 269-280, May, 2011.


Although propositional satisfiability (SAT) is NP-complete, state-of-the-art SAT solvers are able to solve large, practical instances. The concept of backdoors has been introduced to capture structural properties of instances. A backdoor is a set of variables that, if assigned correctly, leads to a polynomial-time solvable sub-problem. In this paper, we address the problem of finding all small backdoors, which is essential for studying value and variable ordering mistakes. We discuss our definition of sub-solvers and propose algorithms for finding backdoors. We experimentally compare our proposed algorithms to previous algorithms on structured and real-world instances. Our proposed algorithms improve over previous algorithms for finding backdoors in two ways. First, our algorithms often find smaller backdoors. Second, our algorithms often find a much larger number of backdoors.

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